The Glen Group

Church Building

South Porch with dog-tooth mouldings

Porches and Nave

Early English pier bases (1130-1200) rest on earlier (Norman) stonework(1066-1130).  The north and south aisles of the nave contain Ball Flower friezes in the Decorated style (1300-1350) and the south porch contains dog-tooth markings of a similar period. The rest of the Nave is predominantly Perpendicular (1350-1480); the clerestory was added in the 15th Century.

Buttressed West PillarsButtressed West Pillars

Two western pillars were buttressed with masonry in the 15th Century to offset the lean of the tower and to relieve the pressure on it.

Nave RoofNave Roof

The original Nave roof was much steeper than the present one, as can be seen outside by the weathered stone of the tower. On one of the oak beams supporting the roof is carved "T.N.Roe 1830".

Choir from Nave AltarChoir

The Choir is structurally part of the Nave and is unusual in being in front of the screen. The choir stalls are of fine modern oak. On the south side of the Choir is a `two manual' pipe organ built by Hewitts of Leicester, installed in 1908. The Organ was completely rebuilt by Henry Groves of Nottingham in 1983.

Chancel Arch with Rood ScreenChancel Arch

The Chancel arch is probably early English (1130-1200) with a spiral staircase on its south side, leading to a Gallery.

The present Rood Screen and Gallery are of oak, and modern, but contain remnants of an earlier screen discovered during early 20th Century restoration works (1900-1908), largely at the hands of Revd. Law James, Vicar at Surfleet from 1898-1932.

Above the screen stands the Rood or Cross. In medieval times it would have been flanked by the figures of Our Lady and St John, thus portraying the crucifixion.

Quatrefoil WindowQuatrefoil Window

At the top of the gallery staircase is a pretty quatrefoil window (which can be seen from the outside).


The fine hammer style roof, re-slated in 1963, may have been cut down from the Nave roof when the Chancel was reduced in size in the 15th Century. A contract for the work (dated 1418), survives; a London mason's letter dated 1420 reminds the Church that the account is yet to be settled.

Sir Hugh de Cressy - TombTomb of Sir Hugh de Cressy

In the sanctuary the limestone cross-legged effigy of a knight in chain and plate armour, with a shield on his arm and his foot on a lion, was reputed to be Sir Roger de Cressy of Cressy Hall.

It is now thought to be Sir Hugh de Cressy (1313-1347) who, after returning victorious from the battle of Crecy (1346) was responsible for rebuilding much of the church, and adding the spire, in thankfulness for his safe return.

High AltarHigh Altar

This is the focal point of the church. It is raised up on three steps, for the Sub Deacons, the Deacons and the Celebrants.

The four Riddles (curtain posts) are each surmounted by an angel holding a candle. 


In memory of Revd Henry Law James (Vicar 1898 to 1932), depicts the Last Supper. Judas Iscariot is absent.

15th Century FontFont

The Font is 15th Century, octagonal, perpendicular, with a carving of tracery and flowers, and a decorated, deeply buttressed stem with unusual concave mouldings at the base.

It is very similar in date and style to the Font installed at Pinchbeck St Mary, and was perhaps made by the same craftsman.

The carved wooden cover contains elements that are many hundreds of years in age.

West WindowWindows

The west window is of Perpendicular style. The north and south windows have been remodelled probably in the 16th Century, to a square domestic pattern. The south window contains a medley of old stained glass dug up from the churchyard - a legacy of the destruction of churches during the era of the Civil War. The outside of the north door is said to be pitted with the musket shot of Cromwell's troops who used the church to stable their horses.

Millennium WindowMillennium Window

The Chancel contains a Millennium Window, dedicated on 16th July 2000 by the Rt Rev. Alastair Redfern, Bishop of Grantham. The people of Surfleet and the District and Parish Councils all helped to raise the money. Over £3,000 was given in one day. The window, to mark the beginning of the third millennium, is of modern design by artist Glenn Carter. It is symbolic in that the palm is the emblem of the saints and martyrs, the gridiron and tongues of flame suggest the martyrdom of St Laurence, while the flames also allude to Pentecost and new life in the Third Millennium.


Prior to Revd. James' restoration works Surfleet St Laurence had been equipped with box pews and a three decker pulpit. The current pulpit is the top tier of the old three decker configuration, and is of simple design in 17th Century panelled oak

Bishops ChairBishop's Chair

In the Sanctuary is the Bishop's Chair, carved by Belgian refugees in 1916. The Sanctuary lamp was given in memory of Wallace Redfern Scott, a Lay Reader and Chorister of this church.

Parish ChestChurchwardens' Chest

In the south aisle is the eighteenth century parish or churchwardens' chest - a reminder of the days when the churchwardens were responsible for parish affairs.

 The chest would be used for storing parish papers and accounts. These are now stored in the archive at Lincoln. Three padlocks are provided. The chest could only be opened in the presence of the vicar and two churchwardens.

Buckworth MemorialMemorials

Over the door to the Gallery is a brass memorial "dedicated to the glory of God in memory of Joseph Henry Flowers, a chorister born February 2nd, 1897, at rest July 28th 1910".

The memorials on the Chancel floor include one to Dame Anne Fraiser, who endowed the charity school (now the Fraiser room next to the Church) and paid the salary of the Master.

There are several other memorial slabs that have had their brasses removed by Cromwell's troops.

Hatchment for Buckworth FamilyHeraldry: Buckworth Family

Above the south door is a hatchment with the arms of the Buckworth family. Hatchments were boards bearing the family coat of arms, carried before a funeral procession and then hung up in the church.

Queens ArmsHeraldry: Queen Ann

Above the north door are the royal arms ordered to be set up in all churches after the Restoration. They are the arms of Queen Ann. The marking GR IV was probably added later when royalty were in the area.

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